Trinity United Methodist Church in Evansville, IN conducted a very busy and successful Inasmuch Day on Friday, June 22. Tommy Tate served as the Event Coordinator and told David Crocker that the church expected to mobilize 70 volunteers, yet 91 showed up! Tommy shared this about their Day:
I had the joy of serving [this] day of sharing and giving through 91 volunteers. The volunteers put together 84 Care Packages and distributed them to hospital waiting rooms along with baskets of cookies to 2 fire stations. [Volunteers assembled] 100 Hygiene Kits for homeless people.
[They also] prepared and served lunch for 100+ homeless people and delivered 12 casseroles to shut-ins. [Musicians prepared and shared] a program of music … with Nursing Home residents and several properties were cleaned up and repaired. In cooperation with Wesselmans Store and the Tri-State Food Bank, we collected $309.88 in cash and over 100 lb. of food. [On top of it all,] we fed 36 lunches to workers wanting lunch!
Shane Boyles participated in the Inasmuch Day and put together a fantastic video on Facebook. Prior to the event, the article below appeared in Evansville, Indiana’s online Courier Press. What a blessing this Inasmuch Day seems to have been for all involved!
‘Operation Inasmuch’ brings volunteer blitz to Evansville
By Sara Anne Corrigan
Friday, June 22, 2012
Next week a corps of volunteers from Trinity United Methodist Church in Downtown Evansville will split up into 10 small groups to provide supplies and services to a variety of organizations that serve the community’s most needy residents.
They will clean up private property and do handyman jobs for preselected residents in the Blackford Grove/Washington Avenue area; they will man food bins and collect canned goods for the Tri-State Food Bank; they will assemble and deliver hygiene kits for the area’s homeless; they will assemble and deliver donated clothing and prepare and serve lunch for residents at United Caring Shelters; they’ll prepare and deliver casseroles to shut-ins.
“Operation Inasmuch” is a one-day blitz on June 30, said Tommy Tate, coordinator of the project.
“The name comes from Matthew 25:40,” he explained: “And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, in as much as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’
“It is a compassion ministry.”
Tate and the committee at Trinity did not create Operation Inasmuch out of whole cloth: “It all began in Fayetteville, N.C., at the Snyder Memorial Baptist Church back around 1995,” he said.
“I learned about it through a former (music) student of mine in Henderson, Ky., where I was choral music teacher. She had gone on to become a youth minister at that church and had met Dave Crocker there.”
Crocker is a retired minister and executive director of Operation Inasmuch Inc., which is now a national organization that provides the tools to mobilize congregations.
Tate also is retired but has been serving on the Vision Committee at Trinity for the past two years. “And I thought it might be good for our congregation and good for the community,” he said.
Senior Pastor Allen Amstutz said when Tate brought the idea to him, “I was very interested. I had been trying to find ways to engage our members in ministry, to reach out, mobilize and move into the community, but I had never had a tool, a way to generate interest.
“We have about 70 volunteers signed up right now,” he said. “Depending on our success this time, we may do this twice or even four times a year.”
Amstutz said that Trinity, located at 216 SE Third St. has established its target neighborhood as within boundaries of Riverside Drive, the Lloyd Expressway, U.S. 41 and the Ohio River.
“And this project is about Trinity members serving non-Trinity members,” although interested volunteers do not have to be Trinity members.
In addition to Amstutz and Tate, the planning committee includes Sheila Kennedy, Will Firestone, Fred Mulfinger, Andrew Hartman and Wheeler Stephens.
Operation Inasmuch, Inc., provides leadership and training, Tate said. “Dave Crocker came here and spent some time with us, training us to prepare and implement this program. We brainstormed projects we thought we could do in the area (we wanted to target); we put together 10 projects and coordinated everything.”
The projects cover an array of tasks that are meant to be of interest to volunteers with a variety of skill sets. All projects are designed to be completed within a 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. time frame, Tate said.